Peabody Singing Tower

 North Manchester, Indiana

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North Manchester

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Source: NMHS Newsletter Aug 2002

Updated Fire Department

July 26, 1883

We are happy to announce to the citizens of our town that the trustees have ordered a complete Hook and Ladder outfit for the benefit of the public at fires that may hereafter occur. All will concede that this is a step in the right direction. The determination and pluck displayed by our people assisted by an outfit of this nature will. we predict, successfully combat an ordinary fire. A large percent of the

many fires this town has had in the past two years would have been controlled with but slight damage to property if ladders had been in reach at, or near, the time the fires were discovered. A member of the board informs us that they contemplate supplementing this outfit with a hand engine and hose cart as soon as the necessary preparations can be made. Of course, but little use could be made of an engine until cisterms have been provided where needed throughout the town.


Now that a Hook and Ladder truck has been ordered, and only awaits the lettering before shipment, it is high time that our active energetic young men should organize a company to manage it. Our town has the material to fill a half dozen good companies, out of which one can be named that our citizens may be proud of. Let no time be lost, but fill up a company at once, elect officers, select your name, and North Manchester will have what "even the newspapers have been howling about."

August 9, 1883

In view of the fact that the town board has purchased a hook and ladder truck, a meeting was held last Tuesday evening in the office of I. E. Gingerick for the purpose of organizing a hook and ladder company. ... A constitution and by-laws was adopted and everything put in order. The following officers were elected: R. E. Quivey, foreman; Smith Horn, assistant foreman; Ora Gladden, secretary; George Enyeart, treasurer. The company organized with eleven members and received ten proposals for membership which will be voted on at the next meeting. They will meet again Tuesday evening, Aug. 21st. The outfit will not arrive for some time yet and the boys have plenty of time to get their company in good running order. The company will be composed of all 'solid' men who will take an active interest in its welfare and will do good service at a fire. The limit of membership has been placed at twenty-five....We are glad to see the boys take hold of the matter with such willing hands and hope that they will meet with all necessary encouragment from the citizens.

Dec. 6, 1883

The long wished for Hook and Ladder truck is here. It arrived Monday morning and the company and the town officials followed by

Page Nine

a large number of citizens went to the depot to receive it about 9 o'clock that morning. It was but the work of a few minutes to take it off the car, rig it up in shape when the company took hold of the ropes and took it through the town on the run. The truck is indeed a "dandy" as the company expresses it.

Monday was set for trying the newly purchased fire engine. Alec Apple, chief of the fire department and Dick Williams, water works engineer of Peru were on hand to help test the working qualities of the engine. It was first taken to the old race at the foot of Sycamore street where it did moderately good work after which it was moved to Gosshorn's well with about the same effect. Then it was taken to the Wabash elevator and to Strauss Mill where it did excellent work, throwing water over both structures which are as high as any building in town. They have but three sections or l50' of hose with the engine and one nozzle which throws an inch and a half stream of water. This clearly demonstrates the ability of the engine to perform its work. We are still firm in our opinion that the engine is a good one and that the town has secured a bargain in its purchase. Put in the hands of an accomplished and careful engineer and with a three-quarters inch nozzle there is no doubt that it will throw water as far and do as effective work as any engine that could be gotten. A nozzle of that size is amply large for all purposes and is as large as those mostly used on all engines. The general opinion of the people is that the engine is good and they seem glad the city has secured it.

As soon as the hose arrives it will be taken out and tried as often as practicable that the workings of it may become familiar to the company in case of fire. Smith Horn has been appointed engineer and Theron Clapp fireman, both good appointments and the boys feel quite proud of their positions. For the present the engine is kept in Johnsons barn, but as soon as possible an engine house and fire department headquarters will be erected on the ground by the calabose.